In many sectors, a combination of technology and changing social expectations has now enabled agile working practices to become standard. It seems that the financial services sector has been somewhat slow on the uptake, however, with just a third (36%) of businesses in the industry offering flexible working. At the same time, competition for skills is heating-up, from both other sectors and from fintech start-ups that have been founded with flexibility in their DNA.


In recent years there has been a cultural shift away from pay being the main driver of job choice to a more holistic view; the full package, including working environment and work life balance now drives applicants’ career decisions. So much so that that one in four UK professionals have quit roles to find greater flexibility. We have increasingly found that candidates are not interested in even tentatively applying for roles with companies that are not offering an agile approach – it is now a ‘must have’, rather than a ‘nice to have’.


For those financial services businesses that have successfully developed a flexible working culture, the issue they often face is actively communicating their values and working practices in such a way that engages prospective candidates. In a candidate-short market, businesses that can showcase modern ways of working through their recruitment process are most likely to attract and retain the best talent.


Candidate comms

Finding the right balance might not be as distant a reality as perceived though. This is where recruiters can add real value – acting as an advocate for companies by articulating their values and demonstrating flexible working propositions through the recruitment process itself. There are several ways to do this effectively, from using websites and social media as a shop window into life at the firm, to more elaborate events targeting prospective candidates.


For example, if a financial services company is struggling to attract millennial professionals due to an inaccurate or outdated perception of ‘corporate’ culture, hosting events which give people a chance to see their office space and culture could be the perfect remedy. This is a tactic that has worked well for technology firms and fintechs – there’s no reason such networking events wouldn’t have a similar impact in other areas of the financial services sector without appearing to be pushing for a hard sell.

Source - Read More at: